This is one of the most common question i come across, Does Hosting affect SEO rankings? The plain answer to this question is YES! But its more important to understand How?

The most common Web Hosting which people opt for is ‘Shared Web Hosting’ and the prime reason behind that is ‘low cost’ and now If you are worried about a thing that does hosting affect SEO rankings? This is a genuine concern, and now we will discuss here.

No doubt, Shared Hosting is quite good up to some extent, but it’s has some major disadvantages and below I have listed the important factors that can affect SEO ranking.

Loading Speed

The speed at which your website loads for an user participate a prime role in determining its search engine ranking. Shared hosting include shared use of a server.If your server is flooded with too much visitors requests and slows to a crawl because of it, your website’s speed will fall because you are sharing the resources with another high-traffic websites.

It all depends on how efficient the web host is relatively distributing the whole server resources. Even if your index page is loading slowly, visitors might leave the website early. It increases your bounce rate which is yet another main factor consider into account in your website ranking.

Be sure that your landing pages loads speedily to make the ranking better. No one likes to click on a link and then wait for long to pen the page. You not only lose potential users, but Google penalties you for slow loading, and for a high bounce rate.

You can check on Google Webmaster Guideline which shows slow loading can affect your site’s ranking

You can check the loading speeds for pages on your site here:

Google PageSpeed Insights

Speed_Test_By_PageSpeed_Insights

PingDom Tools

Website_speed_test_by_Pingdom_Tool

GTmetrix

Speed_Test_By_GTmetrix

Uptime/Downtime:  

Your server uptime is a huge consideration though.To Make sure that your website is up and available for use 24 hours a day and 7 days a week is prime factor to reach the search engine rankings and be at the heights.

Google spiders will probably try to visit your website many times a day. If might be your website is loading slowly or inaccessible and at the same time the Google is crawling your website, it gives negative search engine ranking to your website.

If this happens repeatedly then your site gets flagged as unreliable and your rankings may be downgraded.  Although no hosting provider can promise that your website will be responsive all of the time.

Most web hosts are quite reliable these days though and they can isolate the individual sites that cause the servers to go down. it’s not acceptable to expect a hosting provider to provide and to guarantee less than 99.9% uptime.

Server Location:

Does the Geographical Location of Your Hosting servers Affect Your SEO Ranks?

The short answer is yes, but it isn’t necessarily a top concern. Search engines Like Google appoint a country to your website according to the geographic location of the hosting server.

You will rank high in the same location your server is located. It means When you are ranking with google ,your server location is a notable factor. Even you may rank higher in other regions too. You can also help your website rank by using the geo targeted domains.

Although, it is more necessary that you should choose a hosting provider that is reliable and choose the company that has more advanced web servers will possibly help to increase your  SEO rankings more despite of what region you are going to target.

Bad Neighbourhood:

If you are using a Shared IP Address with your shared hosting server there are a lot of security and SEO threats. There is a problem in shared hosting server that you might be part of what Google calls a ‘bad neighbourhood’. It means that if any other other website on your shared server has been flagged as a spammer, then everyone on that server (i.e. same IP address) will be affected.

 

Even some of the service providers will do their best to keep the servers free of security threats and malware. But When a lot of sites are hosted on a server, there are increased security threats.Google might penalize you  in order to protect their users by even removing your ranking directly because you are hosted on the same IP address.

Some antivirus softwares may raise false alarms against your website too due to any other infected website on the same ip address.

Tip of the Day: You can learn more about what to do if you are infected on this Google answer.
Video from Matt Cutts on how does hosting affects seo ranking:

In 2003, Craig Silverstein, Google’s Director of Technology at the time, give talk to a question regarding the value of having a dedicated IP address to SEO. He stated:

Google handles virtually hosted domains and their links just the same as domains on unique IP addresses. If your ISP does virtual hosting correctly, there is no difference between the two cases.

After Three years in 2006, the head of Google’s webspam team, Matt Cutts, further explained this point:

There is no PageRank difference whatsoever between these two cases (virtual hosting vs. a dedicated IP).
Later, in 2010 and 2013, Matt Cutts specified an extremely rare scenario where sharing an IP address could effect your site – if you shared a server with a huge majority of spammy sites.

So it is always preferable to be on the secure side and avoid shared hosting if you can.

You can check the all websites that is hosted with you on the same server and its a possibility that there a lot of spammy and porn websites on the same server.If there are gigantic number of bad websites hosted on same shared server it can result in negative rank of your website too.

You can do the reverse IP lookup  to get the information about list of websites hosted on your server. Below is the screenshot result:

Reverse_IP_Lookup_-_Find_Other_Web_Sites_Hosted_on_a_Web_Server

You can use the free service to check if your website is blacklisted anywhere. Below is the screenshot result for my website:

Blacklistalert

Other Possibilities for Shared Hosting:

Even though shared hosting may not affect the ranking directly, if you don’t want to take any chances, there are couple of other options:

  • You can opt a dedicated IP Address on your shared hosting package.Even Your files are hosted on the same physical server but you have your private IP Address.
  • Virtual Private Hosting (VPS): In VPS hosting, your website will be hosted on a virtual computer that has a dedicated ip address. Most of the problems I mentioned above will not affect the VPS hosted websites. VPS is more expensive than shared hosting but it is of course cheaper than dedicated hosting.
  • Dedicated Hosting: If you have very high traffic website, you should go for dedicated server.You will have your own complete control over it. Your server resources will be used only by your websites and will have your own private ip address and it solves all the problems created by shared hosting. Definitely it is very expensive.

Conclusion: Does shared hosting affect SEO or not?

Wrapping Up

To conclude it up , Even shared hosting may not directly affect the SEO of your website, it may have many indirect effects. There are some possible issues Like Blacklisting of IP or spamming. And it is like the one in thousand case  and it’s hardly you to bother about.So there is a one good advice for you that always sign up with a reliable provider and If you cannot afford a dedicated server or VPS, your best option is to opt for a dedicated IP address on shared hosting.